Norman Lamb – 2016 Parliamentary Question to the Department of Health

The below Parliamentary question was asked by Norman Lamb on 2016-04-20.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what information his Department has received from NHS employers on the number of junior doctors who have worked weekends in the last six months.

Ben Gummer

The Department does not routinely collect this information. However NHS Employers conducted a survey of employers in January 2016, which asked what percentage of junior doctors worked 1 in 4 weekends or more frequently. The data returned reflected a snapshot (rather than the last six months).

Based on a response from 14 employers in England, 40% worked more frequently than 1 in 4 Saturdays.

Our manifesto commitment, which was translated into the mandate that shaped the contract negotiation, was for the National Health Service to standardise urgent and emergency care, it is not about elective care. It is true that some hospitals do elective work at weekends. That is part of the trust’s local decision-making and it is right for the hospital to make that decision.